Quality Schools – frequently asked questions

This page provides general information about the Quality Schools reform package presented in a question and answer format.

On this page:

What was the 2011 Gonski review and what did it recommend?

The 2011 Review of Funding for Schooling was commissioned by the former Government and led by Mr David Gonski.

The report made many recommendations, but central to the review was the concept of a needs based approach to funding that provided a ‘schooling resource standard’ with:

How was the 2011 Gonski Review implemented?

While the concept of a schooling resource standard was included in the Australian Education Act 2013, the generous transition arrangements mean that it will take more than 150 years for all schools to be treated equally.

Even the most overfunded schools receive annual increases in funding of three per cent – well in excess of inflation.

It will take more than a decade on average for underfunded schools to reach the standard.

The special deals negotiated with states means that government schools in many states will end up with a lower share of their entitlement than non-government schools.

A student with the same need in the same sector attracts different funding under current arrangements simply because of the state in which they live.

What is the Government doing to fix this?

We will end the special deals made by the former Government that have resulted in students with the same need within the same sector being treated differently just because of the state in which they live.

Under the new arrangements announced by the Government, students with the same need within the same sector are treated the same, regardless of where they live.

Within 10 years, all schools will receive their fair share of Commonwealth funding.

We will invest record levels of recurrent schools funding, increasing from $17.5 billion in 2017 to $30.6 billion in 2027.

This is an increase of over 75 per cent in Australian Government funding to schools over the next 10 years – well above inflation and enrolment growth.

The schools that are furthest behind will receive the fastest increase in funding

What does this mean for my school?

More than 99 per cent of schools will see a year on year increase in funding.

On average, per student funding will grow 4.1 per cent each year over the next decade.

Will any schools lose funding?

More than 99 per cent of schools will see year on year increases in per student funding.

However, a small number of non-government schools currently receive more funding than other schools with similar need.

These schools will see a small reduction in funding while schools transition to the new arrangements.

We won’t know exactly how many schools this applies to until final enrolment numbers are available later this year, but we estimate it to be less than 25 non-government schools in 2018. That’s less than a per cent of all schools.

And in terms of reductions for this small number of schools it would only be around 2 per cent or less per year until they reach their Commonwealth share of funding.

Once the transition is complete, all schools will be treated equally.

How will the Government’s plan improve student achievement?

The Review to Achieve Educational Excellence in Australian Schools, chaired by Mr David Gonski AC, will provide advice on how the extra Commonwealth funding should be invested to improve school and student achievement.

The Review findings will inform a new national agreement between the Commonwealth and states to make sure that reform actions are based on solid foundations.

Implementation of reforms will be a condition of funding for states.

In 2016 the Australian Government released its Quality School, Quality Outcomes reform plan to improve student outcomes in Australian schools

Further information is available at Quality Schools, Quality Outcomes.